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Grosse Pointe Woods

Liggett football team sneaks into playoffs at 5-4

Knights earn rematch with Southfield Christian

October 30, 2013

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Tommy Jackson makes a pass during a September game against Southfield Christian. The Liggett quarterback and the rest of his squad get their second shot at the Eagles in the playoff opener.

GROSSE POINTE WOODS — For the fourth year in a row, the Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett football team is part of the postseason party.

For the first time in that span, the Knights needed an at-large berth to grab a spot on the guest list.

Now officially in, coach Dan Cimini said his guys might as well make some noise.

“We’re just happy. The guys are excited to be part of this again,” Cimini said just hours after learning Liggett had officially qualified. “I had a pretty good feeling we’d make it (at 5-4), but you never know.”

The Knight did, and on Nov. 2, they’ll tackle Southfield Christian in a 1 p.m. Division 7 pre-regional at Madison Heights Bishop Foley.

Liggett faced the Eagles once this season, a 20-8 loss in September.

“The first game was real close, a lot closer than the score says,” Cimini explained. “It was 6-0 at halftime, and we weren’t playing our best football just yet. We’ve made some changes since then, and I think Southfield is in to see a much different team.”

The Eagles’ victory against Liggett was part of an 8-1 regular season.

That total set a regular-season record and equaled the win total (8-19) of the past three seasons combined for the program.

And while Liggett has plenty of playoff experience to fall back on, Eagles coach Larry Weiss wasn’t worried about how inexperienced his squad will be.

“We have a lot of senior leadership, and even when you haven’t been through the playoffs and you’ve lost as much as we have in the past, it builds a lot of character,” Weiss said. “I think this is a group of kids that believes in themselves. They don’t need any extra motivation to know what’s on the line.”

Cimini, however, sees the second shot at Southfield Christian as a golden opportunity.

“I think it’s always good to know who you’re playing,” Cimini said. “I think it’s always tough to beat a team twice in one year, especially when the teams are this evenly matched. Our advantage is that we are excited to be part of the playoffs again, and we have that mentality that there’s nothing to lose.”

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